Day Twenty-three: The End
Ladock to Land's End. 45.97 miles. Total: 1021.71 miles
Wow! What a day....and one day Izzy will really understand and appreciate the enormity of her achievement! This was one of the smoothest and easiest days mentally: we knew what we needed to achieve and there was no option but to get on and finish this epic journey. Along the way there have been many highs, a few lows, laughs, tears and so many wonderful memories, all made possible by an incredible back-up team and a 12-year old girl with a dream of cycling the length of the UK! The day started with an easy, mainly downhill, run into Truro before we hit 5 miles of more Cornish hills. The Cornish hills are not like the Scottish ones. There, they gradual ascend to great heights, in Cornwall they are short, sharp and steep. However, we made good progress and by the time we met Heidi for coffee we had nearly 13 miles completed. Before lunch we reached the highest point of the day, just past Four Lanes and then were joined by Heidi and Martha to speed down into Praze-An-Beeble, where we clocked up the 1000th mile of the journey. The first half of the remaining 21 miles was an easy downhill into Penzance, past wonderful views of St Michael's Mount, before we headed out on the A30 for the final section. Although pretty innocuous on the map, the final 10 miles were undulating for the first 5, and coupled with some fairly impatient drivers, it made for a slightly uncomfortable journey. The final five we sped along, with regular mileage signs encouraging us that the finish was nearing. We arrived to Martha, Heidi, Mum, Dad, Chris and Chris with flags, banners and balloons, before the prize of the final, finishing photograph. It was a wonderful moment and one that Izzy should, and will be, very proud of. To be at the very end of the UK, having started at the top, was almost incomprehensible. Prosecco and cake in the car park followed, before we all headed back towards Taunton, Tiverton and Exeter. The journey home actually started to bring into stark reality the distances travelled as we passed places that we had cycled through earlier in the day and the week. There are many stats to highlight and people to thank, but it is late so I will do that tomorrow. Wow....what a day!